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Old 9th March 2007, 12:32 PM   #21
djQUAN is offline djQUAN  Philippines
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I also use carbide drills and a drill press. without a press, I was able to break around 10 bits and not even finishing one board.

I also second what they said about HSS bits last quite a while with phenolic boards and wear down very quickly with FR4 boards.



what about cutting the PCB's to size, what do you guys use?

for FR2, I use the score and snap method. for FR4, I have a cutting disc and run the entire lenght until it goes through.

I would love to have a guillotine but not available anywhere here.
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Old 9th March 2007, 01:25 PM   #22
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I only use FR4 cos I'm posh

I cut the board oversize about 5mm all round with a hacksaw, filing the edges over.

Then after etching, drilling and tinning I trim again with a hacksaw. I finish off finely with a hand held belt sander.

I too would dearly love a guiilotine. 300 though.
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Old 9th March 2007, 01:54 PM   #23
impsick is offline impsick  United States
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i've been using these huge scissors, kinda like tin snips. they cut through double sided boards like butter. $25 at home depot.


OK. i take it your supposed to drill after etch right? does it matter?
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Old 9th March 2007, 02:06 PM   #24
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Actually, it does matter.

If you drill first, you always run the risk of excessive undercut of the copper at the hole site... making your holes end up with no copper near them. Not the ideal conductivity solution.

You could take extra steps to prevent it... but with DIY boards, it is much easier to use the etched hole as a guide for a drill bit.
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Old 9th March 2007, 02:13 PM   #25
djQUAN is offline djQUAN  Philippines
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if you're going to do photoetching or press and peel method, etch then drill.

if you're going to use the manual method (manually drawing the layout with felt tipped pen) then drill then you connect the dots.
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Old 9th March 2007, 02:28 PM   #26
impsick is offline impsick  United States
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i see, i was wondering if it wouldnt be easier to drill 1st and then go back and maybe fat'n those edges around the whole with a sharpie? ( just so you dont have that problem of drilling out the copper)
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Old 9th March 2007, 06:58 PM   #27
Nixie is offline Nixie  Canada
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I cut the boards with a diamond wheel as I don't have a guillotine.
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Old 9th March 2007, 07:48 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally posted by impsick
i see, i was wondering if it wouldnt be easier to drill 1st and then go back and maybe fat'n those edges around the whole with a sharpie? ( just so you dont have that problem of drilling out the copper)
If you drill first, so the copper round the hole gets eaten away too much, then the last thing you want to do is risk taking off more copper. And would you really be bored enough to drill a board then go round every hole again with another tool?

Drilling after etch also has the advantage that the drill centres itself in the slight indent of the hole.
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Old 9th March 2007, 08:13 PM   #29
cpemma is offline cpemma  United Kingdom
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Originally posted by jpg
I bought used carbide drill bits on ebay from a PCB manufacturer for next to nothing (compared to what they'd cost new). They came in perfect shape.
Both Rapid Electronics and ESR sell re-ground (ex CNC) bits in the UK, 1.90 each compared to 2.88 new for 1mm.

Rapid cheaper but min. order 10-pack in the re-ground.
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Old 10th March 2007, 04:20 AM   #30
jpg is offline jpg  Germany
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AFAIR, I got mine for ~0.7 pp., but 1.90 are still acceptable if you don't break a drill bit every other hole.
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